Fine food, big winds and seasickness. Julian Sincock with the latest from the good ship Northern Child 7/12/06

Daily Log No 12 Northern Child
DateThursday 7 December 2006
Position15.35N 45.08W

This trip to St Lucia gets more and more difficult – yet again we have been greeted by the new sun coming up in a ball of fire to the east, puffy white cumulus clouds scudding across a deep blue sea. The wind is still blowing 20-25 knots out of the east, it really couldn’t be better. Also, it is difficult to describe last night’s full moon as anything other than spectacular – the moon was so bright it was casting shadows on the deck, and glistening off the surface of the ocean as the waves rolled through.

We haven’t seen much over the last few days, in fact the highpoint has been an Egret that came and flew around us for an hour or two and then flew off again. With so many boats all heading to the same place you might have the idea that we are sailing along in company with one another, but that really isn’t the case; it’s a huge ocean out here.

We have settled down into a routine where eating, sleeping and being on watch rule our 24 hour existence. Yesterday was a Bank Holiday in Spain, so in honour of our two Spanish crewmates, Kat declared a Spanish themed food day to celebrate. Tortilla and Chroizo for lunch, a really yummy chicken paella for dinner – then I went and spoilt it by doing my mum’s bread and butter pudding, christened Pan y Mantequila to fit in with the day! Hmmm, I didn’t do too bad, just loads of sugar.

Our sail repair to the no 1 headsail is now complete. The picture of the day (above) is of Brendan working on the sail repair, but the team comprised as well of Rich, Kathy, Dave A and Julian, and took most of the day. The sail is now flaked and ready to go back up again, except the wind is blowing nice and strong and at the moment we don’t need it.

We have on board with us a medical guinea pig – ‘Enri! ‘Enri is 18 and is a sailing nut – he just loves everything about it, the waves, the boat, the speed, the challenge. But, not being sick! For the first few days of the trip, Enri felt fine, until the calm point in the trough, and from then on for two or three days he was Captain Chunder. Still smiling, still eating and drinking water, he was a trooper, but nothing stayed down. With an international crew on board, he was given and tried every seasick remedy on the market: from pills to patches behind the ears to wrist bands. Nothing worked – until that old favourite……. Stugeron (trumpet fanfare!) He is now a new man – bouncing around like a kid in a bouncy castle, and the moral of the story? Start with good old, boring Stugeron – it might not be a trendy wristband, or a scientifically proven patch behind the ear, it’s just a boring white pill, but it works.

Progress has been fine over the last 24 hours – we have sailed 202 miles towards St Lucia on a pretty good course. That leaves us with 921 miles still to run and means that we have sailed a total of 1,923 miles from Las Palmas. The sea is still pretty playful, so there’s a lot of hard sailing still to be done. It’s not the speed we mind, it’s the rolling, it just never stops!

A bientot